Dozens of Palestinians injured in ‘day of rage’ in support for Jerusalem al-Quds
Dozens of Palestinians have sustained injuries and suffered tear gas inhalation during clashes with Israeli military forces as thousands of people stage demonstrations throughout the occupied West Bank and the besieged Gaza Strip in protest at US President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem al-Quds as Israel’s capital.
Skirmishes broke out between Palestinian protesters and Israeli troops in the Bab al-Zawiyah area of the southern West Bank city of al-Khalil (Hebron) on Wednesday as demonstrators expressed their resentment over Washington’s decision to veto an Egyptian-drafted resolution on the status of Jerusalem al-Quds, Arabic-language Ma’an news agency reported.
Clashes also erupted in the city of Halhul, located five kilometers (3.1 miles) north of al-Khalil.
The Palestine Red Crescent Society reported that its medics provided medical treatment to two protesters. One of them had been struck and injured with a tear gas canister, while another had inhaled an excessive amount of tear gas.
One protester was injured by a rubber-coated steel bullet, and five others suffered tear gas inhalation at Qalandiya checkpoint.
Clashes also broke out between the young Palestinian protesters and Israeli forces, prompting the latter to fire rubber bullets and gas bombs to disperse the crowd.
Palestinians also staged anti-US rallies in East Jerusalem al-Quds’ Kafr ‘Aqab neighborhood and the cities of Bethlehem, Nablus and Salfit.
Additionally, demonstrators staged a rally from Saraya Square to the Unknown Soldier Square in Gaza City, burning the American flag and chanting slogans against US and Israeli officials.
Khalid al-Batsh, a senior official of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad Movement and the Gaza chairman of the Freedom Committee, called on Arab states to expel US ambassadors from their countries, and sever all trade, security and military ties with the United States and Israel.
“Today, America is presenting itself as the bitter enemy of Palestinian people and Arab nations,” Mohammed al-Ghoul, a member of the political bureau of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, commented.
Three Palestinian teens injured in Beit Ummar
Meanwhile, a 16-year-old Palestinian teenager was struck with a live bullet in his thigh during a rally in the Asidah neighborhood of Beit Ummar town, located 11 kilometers northwest of al-Khalil.
Palestinian activist Mohammed Ayad Awad said Israeli soldiers prevented the PRCS medical staff from providing medical assistance to the wounded teenager.
The local residents finally managed to transfer the minor to a hospital in al-Khalil.
Moreover, two teenage boys, aged 15 and 16, sustained gunshot wounds when they were shot in the foot.
A number of protesters suffered breathing difficulties, red eyes and wheezing after Israeli forces hurled tear gas canisters to disperse the crowd.
Israeli soldiers also tried to arrest a 12-year-old at a shop, prompting scuffles with locals. The local residents were able to rid the child.
On December 6, Trump announced his decision to recognize Jerusalem al-Quds as Israel’s capital and relocate the US embassy in occupied lands from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem al-Quds.
The dramatic shift in Washington’s policy vis-à-vis the city triggered demonstrations in the occupied Palestinian territories, Iran, Turkey, Egypt, Jordan, Tunisia, Algeria, Iraq, Morocco and other Muslim countries.
On December 10, violent clashes erupted outside the US embassy in the Lebanese capital Beirut during a protest against the US decision. Demonstrators burnt tires as well as the US and Israeli flags as they pushed to break through a barbed wire erected by security forces around the embassy complex.
Security forces used tear gas and water cannon to disperse the angry protesters.
Jerusalem al-Quds remains at the core of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, with Palestinians hoping that the eastern part of the city would eventually serve as the capital of a future independent Palestinian state.